Mike McCarthy Press Conference Transcript - Dec. 21

Read the transcript of Head Coach Mike McCarthy’s post-game press conference on Thursday night. Packers.com will post these full transcripts after each of Coach McCarthy’s press conferences during the 2006 season.


(How satisfying is this win?)

It's very satisfying. The rivalry speaks for itself. I know it was tied going into the game, so now we're up one. That's a nice feeling. It's a game our players and our fans really look forward to. I don't know how many times it's come down to a field goal, so it's great to come out of there with a victory. The adversity we had to overcome, particularly at the end, I'm just very proud of our football team.

(What do you make of a game where you out-gain them 3-to-1 but look up at the scoreboard and it's still close?)

That's why the most important statistic is the scoreboard. We did a lot of positive things, but when you have as many opportunities as we did in the red zone, and you don't come out with more than three points, it's just a matter of time before that momentum may go against you. Very happy, very pleased, very proud of our defense; they stayed the course. They did not budge for 60 minutes, and I definitely feel that was the key to the football game.

(What can you point to for the improvement on defense?)

That's the way they're supposed to play. That's the defense we viewed as we came out of training camp. Sometimes it takes some groups a little longer to hit their stride. Hey, the most important football that is played is in December, and they're definitely playing very well.

(What happened on Brett's interceptions?)

Well, the first interception was a route adjustment that shouldn't have happened. That was not on Brett. The second one was a poor decision. When you put the ball in someone's hands that much in the first half, that's a tough responsibility. I thought he had a very good game going, and we hit some rough spots. It would have been nice not to punt all day, but sometimes that's not reality. I'm just really proud of the football team, particularly the offense, because we had the same thing happen to us Sunday against Detroit. (I) didn't really like the way the sideline went flat, but the guys just kept battling, the defense just kept giving us the ball back, and Brett makes the big play to Ruvell Martin on the fade route. And then the screen, and that comes back, and so forth. I'm just very proud of our football team, the way they've stayed the course.

(How happy are you for Rayner?)

I was very happy for Dave. That was his first game-winning field goal, and it couldn't have come against a better football team, especially after the first half he had with the slip and the one off the upright. I just think it shows his resiliency. I had full confidence he'd make that last kick.

(How deep were you comfortable going with Rayner?)

We had him marked off to the 35 going both ways, so we were within range.

(Did it seem like a farewell game for Brett?)

I didn't view it that way. We talked about some things before the game. That's a decision he's fully going to make after the season. Just to share our conversation, he's under contract. We'd like to have him back, and we're going to take the time and talk about it after the season. If it was, I thought the crowd was phenomenal, and I think it's a game he'll definitely remember.

(Thoughts on the crowd - seemed like the best all year)

I thought it was outstanding with the towels. The volume of the noise out there, especially down the stretch in the fourth quarter. We greatly appreciate it. They're the best fans in the world.

(Weather affect anything in play calling?)

It took me to lean more towards the pass. Initially going into the game, I wanted to move the quarterback more and run the football a little more. As I viewed it in the first quarter, I felt their pass rush was non-existent. I felt Brett had a lot of time back there, and we were moving the football handily. I think the weather helped us with that.

{sportsad300}(What do you say to a guy like Bubba - ball comes out right at the goal line?)

Bubba's a pro. He's like everyone else. He needs to learn from the negatives, and make sure they turn into positives. Ball security is something that's frankly been a problem. That's four out of five games. Our giveaways - that's something we need to get fixed because we got two outstanding performances from our defense that enabled us to overcome four turnovers last week and three this week. We need to get that fixed.

(Defense was able to keep Jackson in place - how were you able to do it?)

Well, when you play an athletic quarterback - I was impressed the way the young man came into the game. I could see why they're excited about him. He's a composed young quarterback, and we just tried to set the edges and push the pocket. We rushed four most of the time. I think it's a credit to the defensive line. I thought they really set the tempo, and the pass rush today was outstanding.

(Do you now watch other teams this weekend?)

I'm sure I'll look at it now, but I'm trying to stay away from that 'P' word. I want to really focus on Tuesday. The Chicago Bears will be my focus, but yes, I'll be fully aware of what's going on.

(That a good carrot to dangle in front of them?)

I think it's bigger than a carrot. It's something we've been working since March. I'm just very proud of the football team, the way they've stayed the course. As far as the practice structure, heck we went down there Tuesday and had as good a practice as we've had. I wasn't really expecting that, and it paid off tonight. I'm just really happy for our football team.

(Tauscher make a difference, and how's he feeling?)

Mark Tauscher is one of the leaders on our football team. I thought he was having a very good season at right tackle. Anytime you have a guy of Mark's stature come back, it definitely helps you.

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